Church stalwart John's life of service

By Tim Clarke Tuesday 29 January 2013 Updated: 30/01 15:46

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Buy photos » Wulfstan Cross recipient John Bailey (centre) with Bishop Perowne headteacher Julie Farr and the Bishop of Worcester Dr John Inge at the unveiling of an art gallery named in his honour last April. (s)

THE FUNERAL will be held on Friday (Feb 1) of an outstanding community figure who dedicated much of his life to supporting the Church of England in Worcester.

John Bailey MBE, whose involvement with Worcester Cathedral and the Diocese of Worcester stretches back more than 50 years, has died aged 88.

The Worcestershire Regiment veteran was a well-known face at the Cathedral where he had served as a tour guide since 1990 sharing his great knowledge of the stunning building with visitors.

But his work with the Church can be traced back to 1962 when he was appointed Christian Stewardship Advisor for the dioceses of Worcester and Birmingham, a post he held until 1979.

He also served on the Bishop's Council in Worcester for six years, the Diocesan Synod for 12 years and was a church warden at St Barnabas Church in Rainbow Hill for five years.

Mr Bailey chaired a number of church organisations and spent two decades as a governor at Bishop Perowne CE College, where an art gallery was named in his honour last April.

His outstanding contribution to the Church was recognised when he was appointed an MBE in 2007 and last year he became only the second recipient of the Wulfstan Cross, which is named after the 11th Century Bishop of Worcester.

The honour recognises people who have made an exceptional contribution to the life of the Church in the Diocese of Worcester.

Up until last year he was Chairman of the Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC) whose secretary John Dentith said: "John was the ideal chairman for the DAC, unfailingly courteous, knowledgeable in his own right, businesslike and capable of directing business, but without ever losing that gentle twinkle of humour that allowed the serious work to be done in an enjoyable way.

"He was effective out in the parishes as well, a good ambassador in the field, where his own life-long experience of church and parish life stood him in good stead. We shall all miss him greatly.”

Mr Bailey's funeral takes place at St Barnabas Church at 9.30am before mourners gather for coffee and biscuits in the Great Hall of the Old Palace.

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